Recipe: American-Style Farina Bóna Pancakes

Perfect for breakfast, brunch or breakfast for dinner, this pancake recipe calls for a special Swiss ingredient known as Farina Bóna (“good flour”).

Farina Bóna comes from Ticino, Switzerland’s Italian-speaking canton. Made from toasted corn, this flour has a very fine texture with a subtle scent and flavor like popcorn. The first documented evidence of this product dates back to the 19th century.

After World War II, the popularity of this flour waned. The last mill producing it closed during the 1960s. Decades later, however, interest in reviving this forgotten product grew. With the help of Museo Onsernonese, a mill in the village of Loco reopened for the production of this toasted corn flour in 1991. Today, you can find it at specialty food stores in Switzerland, such as Helvetimart in Lausanne and Berg und Tal in Zürich. You can also purchase it online via

What can you make with Farina Bóna?

Originally, Farina Bóna was mixed with water, milk or wine to form a kind of smooth porridge. Since its reintroduction, you can find many other different ways to use this versatile ingredient, both savory and sweet. For example, blogger and cookbook author David Lebovitz has published a recipe for ice cream with Farina Bóna. It can also be added to cakes, biscuits, pasta, spätzle, mousse, chocolate, beer and much more.

One of my favorite ways to use Farina Bóna at home is for pancakes. To make them, I have combined aspects of my favorite American pancake recipes: one from Betty Crocker and one from Al’s Breakfast in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Farina Bóna Pancakes

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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– 1 egg
– 2/3 cups flour 
– 1/3 cup Farina Bóna
– 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
– 1 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 1 cup buttermilk (saure buttermilch / babeurre acidulé)
– 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted


1. In a bowl, whisk the egg until it becomes fluffy.
2. Sift the dry ingredients—flour, Farina Bóna, sugar, baking powder and salt—into the bowl without mixing.
3. Melt the butter and whisk it into the cup of buttermilk.
4. Pour the buttermilk and butter mixture into the bowl and whisk all the ingredients together until smooth and well-combined.
5. Using a measuring cup, gently pour the pancake batter onto a medium-high heated skillet. Flip the pancake once air bubbles throughout begin to burst. Cook about 1-3 minutes on each side, until light golden brown, and serve warm with butter and maple syrup or jam.

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5 replies »

  1. Really loving this recipe, a weekend breakfast staple in our home! I usually add some blueberries and top it with honey, good.

    • That is such wonderful news! So glad this recipe is working for you. Thank you very much for letting me know. Means a lot to me. -Heddi

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